I got to watch reruns of Doogie Howser in its syndication glory days. As an adult, I watched (off and on) How I Met Your Mother. And that’s basically I knew of Neil Patrick Harris, aside from a few factoids here and there (music background, gay… that’s about it). Reading NHP’s Choose Your Own Autobiography was like meeting a new friend.
From the start I was excited about the book’s format. First of all, I was a huge Choose Your Own Adventure book reader as a kid, so you can’t really go wrong with that. I really enjoy quirky books with unique structures and I thought this was so creative. Clearly it has some potentially huge downfalls, but thankfully the writing and strong voice prevents it from being too disjointed or difficult to read.
NPH take a peek at his entire life, from childhood to fatherhood, and I loved reading about each season of his life. I loved how he gave his perspective on working as a teenager, working with some PITA actors or other public figures, calling them out on their crap in a way that was firm and honest but not mean for the sake of being mean.
There were portions of the book that were a lot more… vulgar and shocking than I expected, but they were always in jest and poking fun at himself, or at other people. I’d say that they’re sprinkled throughout the book so it probably wouldn’t be a great read for those who don’t like language or sexual imagery.
I will say this as a final note about the structure: I kept reaching the The End parts and couldn’t remember where the fork was that would allow me to go back to pick a new path, so eventually I just started reading the book like a “normal” book. Sure, I jumped back in time and in topic, but NPH has such a strong and witty voice that I still felt like his stories made sense in a cohesive way. I’m very curious to find out what the audiobook sounds like!
Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher’s Blogging for Books program in return for a fair and unbiased review. I wasn’t asked to give a positive review, just an honest one!